It’s summertime! And while the living may be easy, planning the perfect beach barbecue requires a bit of work. Beach days can be a fun way to bring friends and family together, especially if you don’t have outdoor space at homeㅡyou can make use of public beach facilities and get some swimming in too! We’ve got everything you need to throw the best beach barbecue this summer.
Obviously, the most important part of a beach barbecue is the barbecue! You’ll want a portable grill that is easy to set up. There may be restrictions in your area about the size of the barbecue or what kind of fuel it uses. In Vancouver, for example, any barbecue in a public park needs to be at least 75 cm off the ground. A good tabletop grill will suffice! In Alberta, check the current fire ban situation before you start planning your barbecue, but for most of the summer a gas or propane stove will be allowed.
Got to keep them drinks cold! We’ve got you covered with a ton of cooler options, including this fashionable Thermos Heritage Cooler in a classic check pattern and this 36 litre Igloo Wheelie Cooler (drinks and ice get heavy!).
It’s fun to hang out in the sand, but you at least need something to sit on to keep that sand out of your food. Beach towels offer double duty as a place to sit and tool to dry you off after a dip in the water. This donut printed towel is a fun pick!
If you would rather sit off the ground, there’s a number of camping chair options that will get you up higher. A foldable chair or two is easy to stash in your car trunk.
Nothing gets the party started like some tunes! Bring a portable bluetooth speaker and play music directly from your smartphone. You’ll be the coolest person at the beach.
For kids and kids at heart, pack some games for your party. Golf toss is easy to play and tons of fun. Bocce is another great option that requires even less equipment. Even just a frisbee can make a beach day better!
Last but not least, a beach barbecue needs food! Food, drinks, and things to put those on and in. Burgers and hot dogs are the classic barbecue foods, but if you want to up your game and impress your friends, bring some corn on the cob and grill it up elote-style. The Mexican street dish is easier to make than you think!
Compostable paper plates are a great option for the beach, but if you have particularly liquid or greasy foods, plastic may be a better choice. For drinks, you can stick to cans and bottles, or you can class it up with cute enamel camping mugs. Just like dad used to have!
Make the most of the sunny days and breezy nights by spending time outside this summer. No matter what you choose to do, it’s always more fun with friends!
Canadians love the outdoors. Winter through autumn (yes, that’s how we say it), we spend plenty of time among the woods, mountains and streams.
We love nature so much that to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary, each citizen can request a free National Parks Pass.
We Canadians know about outdoor winter safety, emergency preparedness, and first aid. Still, there have been times when we wish we’d brought something else outdoors with us. The perfect tool, treat, or technology to make the day better. Yup, we’ve learned some mighty hard lessons.
9. Hand Warmers: We happily put up with a lot in Canada to enjoy time outside, but cold fingertips are not high on that list. Sometimes, gloves and mittens alone don’t cut it. And they aren’t practical for certain activities. For those times, we’re glad to have hand warmers. The heat is created by rapidly oxidizing iron inside the packs. But we mainly care about how great it is to have access to literal pockets of warmth all day.
8. A Can Opener: Some resourceful Canadians are able to open a can using a pocket knife or even a rock. But nothing opens cans quite like a can opener, and few forgotten items are more of a pain to do without. You can also take eating outdoors to the next level with the Eat’N Tool, an all-in-one cutlery tool that doubles as both a screwdriver and a wrench!
7. Portable Phone Charger: Some might wonder why you’d need a phone in the woods. There are at least two good reasons. The first is to keep your social media game on point. But the other, of course, is to use the phone in case of emergency. So make sure to bring backup power. That way, you won’t have to worry about using up battery life getting the perfect waterfall shot.
6. A Watch: While it’s true a phone can be great outdoors, for the reasons listed above and others, one thing we hate to be without in the woods is a plain old-fashioned wristwatch. You shouldn’t have to pull your phone out just to check the time. Plus, outdoor and adventure watches often have other handy functions. One of the best features is that they’re generally much more waterproof than a phone!
5. This Survival Bracelet: You can file this under ‘stuff we didn’t know we always wanted until we found out it exists.’ This simple looking bracelet, designed by Gerber with help from Bear Grylls, is more than a fashion statement. It contains 12 feet of incredibly strong nylon paracord. You can use it to get out of any number of scrapes, unless you leave it at home.
4. Adhesive Tensor: It goes without saying you should bring a first aid kit wherever you go. But one thing you’ll be glad to have in it is this adhesive bandage that attaches right to the skin to provide extra joint stability. Since you never know when you’ll twist an ankle, it’s better to just keep this around.
3. Calorie-Dense Snacks: When you’re exerting significant energy outdoors, whether you’re hiking, snowshoeing, sledding, or biking, a hunger-killing snack is just what you need. We’re talking energy bars, dried fruit, granola, that sort of thing. If you don’t pack such a snack, you could easily become fatigued. Or worse, you might get hangry.
2. Duct Tape: Is there a problem duct tape can’t help to solve? Probably. But we haven’t found very many so far. From fixing equipment to patching a tent, and so much more, duct tape absolutely has you covered. We never like to be caught without it in the great outdoors. Actually, we prefer not to be without it anywhere.
1. Fresh Dry Socks: There are so many threats to foot comfort in the Canadian outdoors. Cold weather, combined with more rivers and lakes than any country in the world, means your toes are likely to get wet and/or cold. So you’ll be glad to have an extra pair of socks in your backpack any time of year.
Despite complaints of how it “lasts half the year,” we Canadians love our winters. In fact, we’re proud of them. They’re wonderful for curling up at home, visiting family and friends, and playing in the snow.
But our winter has a dark side with the risk of power outs, frostbite, vehicle mishaps, and more. As with any danger, the key is good preparation. Here are some helpful checklists for winter safety indoors, outdoors, and on the road. They’ll help you survive a Canadian winter in style:
√ Blackout Basics: Home is the coziest place to be during winter. Until there’s a power outage, that is. That’s when you’ll need three days of food and water, a first-aid kit, a battery-powered radio, candles, flashlights, and a few board games, too.
√ Fire Logs: When waiting out cold snaps and nasty colds alike, a roaring fire makes your home into a sanctuary. But maintaining a woodpile can be impractical. Luckily, artificial logs burn for hours. No fireplace? Grab a space heater, instead.
√ A Generator: During prolonged blackouts, a generator can power all your survival essentials, like the heaters we mentioned before and so much more. Just keep it full of fuel and stored away. Even if you never need to use it, it’s great to know it’s there.
√ Large Flashlight: If your car is stuck or can’t be driven safely, you might need to flag down assistance or head for nearby help on foot. In those cases, you’ll be glad to have a large, very bright flashlight to ensure you’re easily seen.
√ Quality Scraper & Shovel: Don’t be forced to push snow around with your boot or use the old credit card window-cleaning trick this winter. Get a full-sized shovel and a quality scraper, instead. You’ll thank yourself later.
√ A GPS Tracker: Planning a long winter car trip? There’s a good chance you’ll leave cellular reception far behind. So it’s always smart to let someone know where you’re headed. Even better? Give them the ability to track you via satellite.
√ Warming Pads: Being outdoors is exhilarating in the wintertime. But before long, your fingers and toes will start smarting. Or worse, they’ll become numb. Keep the fun going with heating pads for your hands and feet.
√ Insulated Drink Container: Canadians know the only thing better than a warm drink at home is one outdoors. If you’re headed out beyond the coffee shops (difficult in Canada, we know), a quality insulated container, like this one from Thermos, will save the day.
√ Phone Charger: You’ve been out all day taking and sharing pictures of your winter fun when you suddenly realize your battery is getting low. Sound familiar? For safety and convenience, carry a pocket-sized phone charger wherever you go.
Stay safe and enjoy the winter, everyone.
For many, roughing is just rough. They like the outdoors, but not being uncomfortable. And separation from technology sounds like the start of a spooky campfire story. For them, now there’s “glamping.” A combination of glamorous and camping, it’s pretty self-explanatory.